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Mission Statement

The Argumentation and Communication Leadership Academy is devoted to helping students develop character, critical thinking, and leadership skills by establishing Speech and Debate programs within the community.

Parent and Student Testimonials

After taking weekly lessons from ACLA and competing in speech and debate, our son gained a lot of confidence with organizing his thoughts to "speak his mind" in a persuasive and respectful way that helped a lot with school work, interactions with friends and teachers, and most of all, self-esteem. I'm happy that he wants to continue with ACLA to further improve his public speaking skills. This is a valuable quality that will help him in every aspect of his life. -Chau and David Thio

Since Mia has been in speech and debate I've noticed that her confidence has gone up. When talking to people and in front of groups she makes eye contact and speaks loud and clearly.

I learned to never give up. I also learned how to speak more confidently in front of a crowd. -Michael S. Student of AC-LA

Hard work pays off

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Director and Founder Willie Washington working with students form Maple Elementary School in Fullerton, CA

Back Story

AC-LA began in early 2013 as the Primary Argumentation and Communication Education (P.A.C.E.) community outreach program started by the CSUF Forensics Team and Instructor/Speech and Debate Coach Willie Washington. The program was implemented at a local elementary in the Fullerton area. Through the P.A.C.E. program, a Speech and Debate (Forensics) team was established to teach critical thinking and competent communication proficiencies. The program focused on the theoretical principles found in the collegiate discipline, Communication. The students learned vital life skills along with the Speech and Debate Curriculum. The program was a success and beneficial to both the students as well as the coaching staff. (Click here to see a letter from Teacher of the Year Theresa Ryan). Noticing a need for this type of program throughout education, P.A.C.E. evolved into an independent non-profit organization known as AC-LA to focus on students of all ages and provide valuable life skills.

Nationals is Almost Here!

ACLA students get the opportunity to compete in the National Junior Forensics League and each year, the national tournament brings together top competitors from all over the country to showcase their skills. Competing in this tournament is a tremendous honor and opportunity for middle school students. Our team has been working all year preparing for nationals in June but as a non-profit, ACLA cannot fund a tournament trip on its own. Your support helps with transportation, lodging and entry fees for our competitors on their way to the national stage. Please help us get to nationals by donating today!

2014 CSBA Golden Bell awarded to The Argumentation Communication Leadership Academy

Support Award Winning Training

AC-LA won the 2014 CSBA Golden Bell Award for its collaboration with Maple Elementary teaching critical thinking and research skills though speech and debate. This prestigious award is given out to community partners like AC-LA that collaborate with California school districts to support the ever changing needs of today's students. AC-LA is now working with three more schools in Orange County as excited parents and administrators spread success stories of their children and students. To support the continued growth of AC-LA, you can make a donation directly or shop at Amazon using AC-LA's Amazon Smile partnership! By shopping though Amazon Smile, a portion of your purchases goes toward empowering local students through argumentation, communication and leadership.

Argumentation And Communication Leadership Academy

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